• Bodies are whizzing by me, tempers flare, and people are yelling, “get out of my way.” This isn’t your typical 405 and 10 freeways or Brooklyn bridge traffic jam.  This is far worse and it’s one I can’t get away from – there are no side streets or detours for me to take. This is a typical school day morning at my house trying to get 4 kids dressed and ready, with a lunch, to go to school. The good news is that after struggling with many variations to fix the problem, I’ve found some side streets that might work for you.

    I was surprised at the amount of things I could prepare the previous night.

    I can definitely tell you what didn’t work and that was trying to wake up early to get a head start, which might help for freeway traffic, but not for this. For some reason, the days I’ve tried that, it seemed like everything went wrong.  My daughter couldn’t find her home work, my son’s favorite shirt was still wet and in the dryer, I ran out of juices for their lunch, and I needed to put the trash out for pick up. The problems may have been different everyday but the scrambling at the last minute just wasn’t doing it for me. By themselves, each of those tasks aren’t too time consuming but put them all together and when you’re trying to rush, things just seem to go wrong and inevitably feel like they take forever to complete.

    The solution was absurdly simple and I’ve known about it for a while, but for some reason I was resistant to put it into action. Perhaps I just didn’t want to think about tomorrow or I believed that things would just go smoothly in the morning. The answer was simply plan ahead, but I didn’t know how to get organized or what to plan. Then I just sat down and made a list of what needed to get done to get ready for school. Once I broke it down, I simply took control of anything I could do the night before. I was surprised at the amount of things I could prepare the previous night. I made lunches; had the kids pick out their clothes and put them by their beds; made sure their backpacks were ready to go by the door with homework and required signatures; made sure the car was gassed-up and in position to go, and placed bowls, spoons, and cereal on the table for breakfast. That alone, gave me enough time to handle the unexpected the next day. This doesn’t mean that you can sleep in later, because that would certainly defeat the purpose. It may not sound fancy, but definitely saves you time and has made my morning much less stressful!